This is not meant to be a political post, nor is it an angry rant that the US Supreme Court ruled in favour of homosexual marriage. This has been expected for a long time, so really, nothing shocking occurred. Rather, it’s a personal rumination and critique over how in our being so cliché, we are actually being very inconsistent and harming society. I want to get at the reasoning behind the ruling, and why it is not carried forward to other types of ‘love’. This blog is more explicit than I am usually comfortable with, so reader discretion is advised.
I am not interested in debating whether or not I think it should be legal or not for homosexuals to marry, as I’m not online to discuss the human rights aspect of things. The same freedom that allows homosexuals to marry is the same freedom that allows me to practice Orthodoxy in North America. Really, I want to get at the issues underlying everything: total superficiality, a worship of ‘rights’ and a forgetting of ‘wrongs’.
Most people can readily accept that the early constitutions both of Canada and the United States were based on Judeo-Christian laws. Consequently, there was no difficulty accepting bans on polygamy, incest or bestiality. I would like to play ‘devil’s advocate’ and ask a simple question: if homosexual civil unions are now ‘blessed’ by the state, then why are these other three still seen as taboo? If two consenting adults feel that they ‘love one another’, why is it that the state can refuse them? If a father and a daughter (or son) who are of age feel that they are in love, then what is the problem?
Let’s look at polygamy first. People already have casual sex. They also have friends with benefits. They also sometimes have ‘open marriages’. Why is this ‘practical polygamy’ acceptable to people and the state, but a person who wants to formally commit to loving many people restricted from doing so? I mean, a person who legally marries someone is held accountable to that commitment, and if he or she breaks that commitment, the severed partners are held accountable for financially supporting one another. This is more responsible, when you think of it, than this free-for-all love affair with no strings attached. If more than one adult is content to be married to the same person, then why is the state restricting their quantity of love? How dare anyone tell them that their love is not real, or that their love is not right? Is it a matter of “love is love” but you can only love this much?
Indulge me further with the case of incest. If two adults consenting to one another want to formally commit to one another in marriage, then based on the same reasons that homosexual unions are allowed, nobody ought to tell them that they cannot. Someone might argue: there’s a risk of disease. Perhaps, a higher risk of disease than the general public. I would retort that the same was true at one time of homosexuality, and people figured out how to make it safe. Actually, if a man engages in sexual activity with his son, or a mother with her daughter, all the fears of disease can be allayed, right? I would also argue that there are general members of society who genetically are statistically more likely to transmit genes that cause disease than incestuous relationships, but we do not ban them from ‘expressing their love’. Ought we to do genetic screening of all people before they can engage in sexual activity to ensure that what they are doing is safe? Ought we to require them to practice certain rules in their sexual lives to ensure they do not transmit diseases in any way? Should we do that to all people who can spread diseases? If that seems like nonsense, then why are we upset if two people want to commit incest? Where are the lines? Is there such thing as common sense? Please, remember that I am playing devil’s advocate and that I do not actually approve of any of what I am proposing.
I changed my mind about discussing bestiality, but I hope by now you get the point. If the “harm” (however that “harm” is defined”) can be resolved in some way, then ought we to restrict anyone from loving anyone or anything and wanting to formally express a commitment of some kind to it? Does society have any real reason to say ‘no that’s wrong’? Because if the problem is just disease, well, we can solve that. Or is the real issue that there is no such thing as wrong and right anymore? I am not saying that bestiality and homosexuality are the same thing, before someone attacks me in that regard. I am attacking the lack of reasoning that is behind these decisions.
Today, however, the government and society are saying that we have no right to judge someone’s love. The Christian model is not ‘right’ for everyone. Okay, no problem. But who is deciding what is right now? Popular vote? If such is the case, then ought those desiring polygamy to go demonstrate and lobby? Or ought the law to make love a non-state issue and simply permit people to unite to whomever they want so long as they obey certain rules? Do most people you know feel comfortable with such a proposition? Guys, wake up! We all shout the most cliché things without ever stopping to think about what such statements mean. “love is love”. Okay, if you believe that then practice it. We don’t, though, we put a bunch of restrictions and wait for people to be loud enough to express how they feel, then realise that we made a rule that we’re not allowed to disagree with one another. What utter nonsense!
To me, the ruling is not an issue of legalities or “how could they” or long rants about how homosexuality is going to destroy us. No. To me, the issue is that the moral decay of society has now taken over rationality. We are an emotional people who care very little about critical thinking or about our collective commitment to one another to ensure some kind of moral standard. We care about how things “make people feel” irrespective of the consequences. The decision to let everyone decide his or her own morality has resulted in a general consensus that no morality is a better norm. This may seem ludicrous, but you can test this by telling anyone on the continent who disagrees with your ‘personal moral code’ that you believe that they are wrong. Not misinformed, but wrong. Yeah, we used to be able to do that comfortably. I don’t mean just Christians could, I mean everyone could. Aren’t we all right, after all? Are we really all ‘saying the same thing in a different way’? We’re not.
But more importantly than that, is that society is fixating itself on irrelevant issues and ignoring the biggers questions about whether we should care about the conduct of people. We are ignoring whether or not we have duty towards one another not only to agreee but to disagree when appropriate. We are ignoring that a family exists to instill beliefs and morality and ethics into this micro-piece of a larger society. Instead, we just say random things and hug each other and hand out anti-depressants to resolve how we really feel.
I think the real issue that led to this ruling is that gay marriage was not seen as an issue because the institute of marriage itself fell apart. The nuclear family has failed. Consequently, new definitions of both love and family, or rather, synthetic ones, have and will take its place, even if it’s wrong. The questions to you are: are you awake? Do you know what’s going on? Do you care? Do you have a sense of morality? Are you afraid to disagree? Do you have conviction about what you believe? Wake up, my friends, wake up your mind to challenge yourself and your society. We say a lot of things, but so little do we think about their meanings.
When the Lord comes, will He find a few faithful? In the words of Abba Antony,
A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, “You are mad, you are not like us.”
Lord, have mercy.
5 thoughts on ““Love is love”, why not 3?”
Hello, thank you for sharing thoughts on this current topic. I would like to say that I do believe in the essence of marriage and that it in itself has not failed. For whatever reason marriages are crumbling because of many factors. God loves us and doesn’t wish for us to be unhappy or unhappily married – but it is one of the greatest sacrements that isn’t to be taken lightly from the beginning till the end. Our foundation of our Church is Love Christ is Love. The unity of same sex marriage is in the legal world for rights, insurance and custody purposes. It is not binding spiritually with God. This affects them greatly and protects them from the loopholes of the law. Yes some marriages are crumbled but there are millions that are doing their best and need improvement. May we each find our way. May we become strengthened in Christ and love even with this news. God is allowing this to happen. This is a message is of Hope. May we be enlightened to keep focused on our relationship with God and being the best example we can be to what He intended : long lasting and beautiful marriages to be and become with Him. Thank you for reading May the blessings be with us all
Thanks for writing!
Indeed, it’s in the realm of the legal, and that’s why I didn’t want to spend a long time talking about whether it should or should not be allowed, but rather to realise that we’re not all really thining about the real issue, the underlying one of moral decay.
I think if we “come to ourselves”, like the Prodigal Son – to have that moment where we realise what we are doing is actually killing us, then we can ask, “Hey, what should we be doing?”, which is what you described – living in the Love of God.
Please keep me and the service in your prayers!
This is a sign of the times. Let him who hath understanding reckon . . .
BTW, that was my favourite quote from Abba Antony
I am trying to understand where you are coming from but your reasoning behind the matter is very flawed and some may even say homophobic. You rely heavily on logical fallacies that invalidate your argument. You use the slippery slope method making hypothetical senerios and jumping to rapid conclusions with out any evidence (for examples see the following links).
You compare us as SSA’s to pedephiles, adulterers, and those engaged in besteality. When Jesus preached to the Samaritan women he told her of the living water he did not go on and on for ages discussing her filthy sin or how she is an adultress or how she is dumb for going out in this time of day but rather told her of the living water. Please preach Orthodoxy preach the love, forgiveness, acceptance, and understanding of Christ as Coptic SSA’S we have heard enough of the homophobic slurs, logical fallacies, and hate preached in the church. Instead of giving us spiritual food we are given long endless sermons how God does not accept us, how we are not natural beings, disgusting, foolish rebels. Preach Orthodoxy, preach of Christ, Preach of the acceptance of the church. We are called to Evangelize with love but sadly all I see are sermons about: Sodom,God’s wrath, and they all lack empathy, love, kindness, and a spiritual message.
I apologize for the rant.
Thank you for taking the time to write, and I’m going to respond because I think this response shows a misunderstanding of what I am writing.
Before saying anything, there’s an underlying assumption of where I stand on anything homosexual-related, when I actually said nothing in this post at all about homosexuals or homosexuality. I am not ashamed to say where I stand on such things, and in fact I did say some things in another blog on that matter. This post that you are commenting on did not say anything about homosexuality, nor did I even condemn the bill itself. As mentioned in it, I said from a human rights perspective, I have nothing to say about it! Some non-religious, non-homophobic people have also read the post and went out of their way to indicate that they thought it was respectful. So I can’t help but wonder if your reaction to it is because of how you feel about the whole issue. I’m not saying this or anything else in an even remotely condescending way.
I have studied philosophy, and I’m also a science background. I’m very aware of what a slippery slope argument is. A slippery slope is sometimes a real thing, though, and that should be kept in mind. It is true, for example, that marijuana is typically a gateway drug, and it’s not something we should be shy about saying when dealing with someone who has an addiction issue. So I just want to say that even if I were to have used a slippery slope argument, it is not always a fallacy.
But beyond that, I’m not concerned about being the slippery slope, because you said that “I rely on logical fallacies in making my argument”. I did not really make an argument. I asked questions. I was asking if love is purely a matter of people’s commitment to other persons or things, then on what basis can the law restrict any kind of marital agreement. I did not even discuss homosexuality. I asked that question. I then used that question to move further to ask a deeper question of, “is there such thing as right and wrong anymore?” and to challenge our cliché statements when avoiding the real issue: we don’t agree on morality and consequently we are in chaos. I even said that Christian norms don’t even need to prevail, but simply that we are in chaos, and we are saying random things that mean very little. I do not apologise for that because I truly believe that.
I did not say, “we should not allow homosexual marriage because such and such will then happen”. No, I asked, since we are allowing homosexual marriage, why are we against such and such. There’s a monumental difference between the two. One is a slippery slope, the other is a valid question. And as mentioned, slippery slope is not always a fallacy.
Second, I did not compare SSAs to pedophiles, adulterers, and those engaged in bestiality. You made a connection that I did not make. I made a connection that all of these categories used to be seen as wrong because there was a Biblical stance against them. I proceeded to say that since we no longer as a society care about what the Bible says about these things (not emotionally, factually!), then why are we still against these? That was the question. If you scroll up, I even very explicitly said from the first draft of this blog, that I am not saying that bestiality and homosexuality are the same thing, before anyone accuses me of such. So I do disagree that there was anything remotely “homophobic” about this post.
You wrote that you are trying to understand where I am coming from, but then you proceeded to tell me what you would like to hear from me. Instead, perhaps you should have asked for clarification on where I am coming from, and then tell me why you think that it was erroneous. It is imperative that people learn how to dialogue rather than to pontificate. Unfortunately, people with various ideas, no matter “what side” they belong to, constantly want to tell others they are bigoted or wrong, rather than trying to get to the meat of what they believe and why.
If you would like to see where I feel in terms of compassion for anyone born with anything and any struggle, I encourage you to read my post here.
I usually would not defend things that I write in this manner, but I take this accusation very seriously because anyone who has dealt with me or heard me speak on these issues will know that I have only compassion for people. In this particular struggle, I acknowledge biological factors, and have pledged myself to be brother to whoever is in this struggle, even if they leave the faith, even if they adopt a lifestyle that I disagree with, and even if they hate my guts, because I love them. I would do that for any of my children, brothers, fathers, mothers and sisters. This is an issue that touches me in a very personal way, and so the supposition that I lack in compassion is not necessarily a fair one. In addition, even if I’m the most loving person in the world, I do believe in Truth, and that Truth to me is uncompromisable.
I hope that you don’t read any anger in my tone, because I promise you there is none in my heart. I have to be firm on some points and acknowledge where I have erred if I have erred. I do not apologise for the content of what I wrote, but I do apologise if there has been a misunderstanding.